That Blue Square Thing

Applied ICT A Level Unit 3 - Database Design

Note: this page applies to the AQA Applied ICT A level specification. This exam was withdrawn in 2012, with final exams in 2013. The content will be retained as an archive and because it has some stuff that might be quite useful for someone or other

Circuit board imagePart 5 - Implementing

Once your database is fully specified you can go and make it!

I'd suggest doing it this way:

You might find that you run into a range of issues when you're creating your database. They can be tricky sometimes. Most problems can usually be solved, but do try not to leave things until the last minute! If you need help with a database then it's better to ask sooner rather than later, and preferably at a time when 20 other people don't also need help!

Writing up the implementation

This addresses mark grid AO1 rows 1 to 4, as well as some of the marks from AO3 and the marks for AO4 row 1.

Look carefully at the markgrid and compare it with what you needed to do in the designing sections (parts 2 and 3). The implementation is about showing what you have done.

Focus on what you've done, not how you've done it. We don't need to see screenshots of how you set up a query step by step. Instead, focus on telling the story of what you've produced. The marks for AO4 row 1 come from you having described what you've done to solve the "problem" - i.e. create the database for the client to meet the client's needs. If it's clear what you've done - because you've told the story well - then you'll get these marks.

Markgrid AO4 row 1
Note: this markscheme is a copy of one available freely on the AQA Applied ICT webpages. It is copyright AQA and reproduced here simply to make access easier for students. No attempt to claim copyright is being made, although I could have copied the text into my own interpretation...
Note: if you feel you've already explained why you've done something in your design section then cross-reference to it rather than simply repeat the same explanation

Data types (AO1 row 1/AO3 row 7) - screenshots of your tables, showing formats used. Validation rules need to be shown - and explained if they haven't already been

Relationship diagram (AO3 row 6) - a screenshot showing the relationships that have actually been set up

Queries (AO1 row 3) - screenshots of query design grids showing the fields included the criteria searched for. Screenshots of parameter query input boxes. Screenshots of the results of queries

Reports (AO1 row 4/AO3 row 5) - the actual reports can be printed. You may need to show design views to evidence processing such as concatenation

Forms (AO3 row 1 & 2) - screenshots of the actual forms are needed. You might want to evidence validation and verification here as well

The data inputs section shows you how to do some of these things.

Error messages (AO3 row 2/3) - screenshots of all error messages are needed

Processing (AO1 row 2/AO3 row 4) - evidence of all the processing. This might involve design view screenshots of queries and reports as well as any other processing such as through macros. Make sure you include any evidence you have of processing - sorting, counting, concatenating, calculating etc...

You'll find lots of examples of processing on the Emo's Database page.

You will need to refer back to the markgrids for AO3 in the designing and data input sections. You can see that there's quite a bit of crossover between the two sections. Just read the markgrid carefully and you'll see how they relate to each other.

Image iconmarkgrid for AO1 rows 1 to 4

PDF iconmarkgrid for AO3 - all rows

Security - AO1 row 5

You need to show that you've thought about the security of your database carefully.

This may go all the way back to the client needs. Clients often want their database to be password protected to make sure that the data can't be accessed by unauthorised people. This might be to protect their customer's details and/or because of the data protection act.

You need to make sure that your portfolio:

You might also have used systems to prompt users if they try and close systems without saving or to restrict user access to the database tables themselves (if they can't see the tables or queries then they can't break the system!).

For the third mark you, naturally, need to explain what you've done.

Markgrid AO1 row 5
Note: this markscheme is a copy of one available freely on the AQA Applied ICT webpages. It is copyright AQA and reproduced here simply to make access easier for students. No attempt to claim copyright is being made, although I could have copied the text into my own interpretation...

You should probably look at That Blue Square Blog for all the really good other A Level stuff.